Depends on the thinkness of the lexan, and how fast your cutters
are moving. If you have trouble with melting, Use a lower speed setting
and stop trying to force the cutter through the plastic.
I have fairly good luck with a simple reciprocating (saber) handsaw,
and a metal-cutting blade, on 1/8" lexan.
If you have a great deal of cutting to do then a plastic cutting blade is
the best solution. A plastic cutting blade has a different angle on the
cutting teeth than a blade designed for wood. I have cut quite a bit of
Lexan, Plexiglass, phenolic, and nylon and I usually used nothing more than
a new, sharp, carbide tipped, saw blade. I have heard that you can turn a
carbide tipped blade backwards and it will hinder the melting; I would not
recommend reversing the blade because the carbide bits will sling off and do
damage. A router (with a 4 flutted bit) will do a great job too.
I've used a jigsaw. I've also used a tool that scores the material
deeply so it can then be snapped -- like "cutting" glass.
On 01/22/04 03:21 pm EvoDawg put fingers to keyboard and launched the
following message into cyberspace:
Table saw with a medium or fine tooth blade does well. A hand-held circular
saw as well, if you use a guide so the saw doesn't twist.
Just about any wood cutting saw will do the trick. Including jig saws.
The key with power saws is to keep the stuff moving at a good clip, and select
a blade that will have 1-3 teeth in contact at all times. Too many teeth,
the blade won't clear, and it'll melt. Too few teeth, and the cut
will be very rough, and in some cases may shatter (not so much with lexan,
much more of a risk with plexiglass).
If you're using a jig saw, be sure to choose a blade with a set to the teeth.
If it's very thin lexan (like 1/8" or less), you might be better off scoring
it with a knife and straight edge and bending it over a straight-edge as if
it were glass. Or even a shear. However, I've had very fine results even
with formica sheet with a fine tooth blade (80 or 100 teeth) on a table saw.
My lexan cutting has mostly been 3/8" lexan. Cuts very nicely on a table saw.
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It's not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
One technique is to heat the sheet up in your oven and use a straight-edge
like a cookie cutter to make the cut. Then just wait for it to cool down
and harden again. If you decide to cut it with a saw and want a really
nice edge, sand the cut edge with increasingly fine grades of emory cloth on
a flat surface, and then spill some ethylene dichlorided on the flat surface
(cookie pan) and stand the cut edge in the puddle. You can either just let
it set or stick it against another piece of plastic for a nice, transparent
I had pretty good results using a 7 1/4 inch thin kerf carbide tipped
blade available from Home Depot. It takes out a lot less material and
therefore generates less heat. Cuases a lot less chipping at the cut
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